Date:Thursday November 1 2012
Saturday 3rd November 2012
New gaffer Sean Dyche will be in charge of his first game this Saturday hoping to keep the visitors, Wolves at bay and get his new career at Turf Moor off to a flying start!
Clarets fans will be able to get a glance of their new manager in action on Saturday following the appointment of Sean Dyche on Tuesday. Burnley face a tough game at home against 8th placed Wolves this Saturday and they will be keen to get back to winning ways after the embarrassing 4-0 defeat in the Cardiff City Stadium last Saturday. Dyche saw that defensive horror show before officially becoming manager and one can only guess what is going through his mind ahead of the game as he seeks to plug the leakiness in the back four. Burnley now have the worst defensive record in the Championship with 29 goals conceded in 13 games and if it wasn`t for our goal-scoring ability at the other end we would be struggling in the bottom three. It so happens leading goal-scorer, Charlie Austin in particular has kept out goal difference respectable (now minus 3) with the Clarets now in 14th spot remarkably still only five points behind the current sixth placed club, Hull City but also worryingly only five points clear of the drop zone.
Wolves, relegated from the Premier League last season, are now beginning to show their mettle and are currently just one point from the play-offs positions with 21 points from 13 games. Stale Solbakken`s men have slightly struggled though recently only picking up two points from their last two games both at home and losing the previous match away to Huddersfield. Wolves have however won five and drawn two of their last nine games so will be a threat on Saturday.
Ben Mee returns from a one-match suspension after missing the Cardiff game. Marvin Bartley has been sidelined recently and news is awaited regarding his groin injury. Ross Wallace was rated 50:50 for the Cardiff game after pulling up in the warm-up session with a hamstring strain in the previous game at Ashton Gate. In the end he didn`t make it but will be hopeful for a return against Wolves.
Back to full fitness following his torn cartilage ordeal, Danny Ings might benefit by being given a start in partnership with Austin upfront. He was beginning to look an effective striker before injury struck and a return to that goal-scoring form could benefit the team and relieve some of the pressure on Charlie Austin. Austin looks increasingly isolated and frustrated alone up front and a partnership with Ings could benefit both players. Danny Ings scored a hat-trick in Burnley Development Squad's 8-2 thrashing of Barrow in midweek so now could be a good time to risk starting him up front in the first team.
Midfielders, Razak Boukari (calf) and Slawomir Peszko (knee ligaments) face a possible six weeks out of action after picking up injuries in Wolves recent games against Sheffield Wednesday and Crystal Palace.
Stephen Hunt will also be sidelined for much longer following an operation due to repair a damaged hip.
Goalkeeper, Wayne Hennessey is close to making a full recovery from the cruciate knee ligament injury he suffered in last season`s Premier League game away to Sunderland last April. He is already playing for the reserves but still looks unlikely to dislodge current in-form keeper, Carl Ikeme.
Ebanks-Blake is currently Wolves leading goal-scorer with six goals so far this season. The striker signed from Plymouth in January 2008, on a four-and-a-half year contract and since his time at Molineux, the 26 year old has netted 52 times in 150 appearances.
Bearing in mind Dyche saw the debacle against Cardiff City last Saturday; it will be interesting to see if he wants to make an early statement and change the team, formation and/or tactics or whether he will stick with basically the same eighteen until he becomes fully familiar with his squad and players. Basically the same eighteen had been effective and confident in the previous two games so perhaps they deserve another chance. Ben Mee will now be available after returning from a one-match suspension for picking up five yellow cards and he looks likely to replace Joseph Mills at left back with the on-loan Reading defender returning to the bench. Could David Edgar also be set for a return following yet another disappointing defensive performance last Saturday? Jason Shackell was our worst defender in the 4-0 drubbing in the Cardiff City Stadium but it seems unlikely Dyche would drop his captain. Michael Duff though might lose out.
On home soil, a 4-4-2 formation might be more appropriate and perhaps it`s time to try Danny Ings up front in partnership with Charlie Austin. Junior Stanislas could be in danger of losing his place after a lacklustre and ineffective performance against Cardiff although to be honest both wingers struggled to make any headway with Pato playing out wide also failing to impress. If Dyche is thinking of making changes, I would predict his eighteen might look something like this assuming Wallace is fit:
Grant, Trippier, Shackell, Edgar, Mee, Wallace, Marney, McCann, Stewart, Ings, Austin
Subs: Jensen, Duff, Mills, Stock, Stanislas, Paterson, Vokes
West Yorkshire referee, Mark Haywood gets this clash. Remarkably last season he did not show one red card in his 42 games in charge and only flashed a yellow card a modest 102 times. He seems to be continuing in a similar vein this season with 20 yellows from 10 games and still no sending-off! Haywood`s last game in charge of a match involving the Clarets was last season in our 2-2 home draw against West Ham back in March this year.
It would be good for the new manager to get off to a winning start and it will be interesting to see how he approaches the game bearing in mind the horror show against Cardiff City before he came on board. He saw that game so one can only guess what is going through his mind especially as he tries to get to grips with our woeful defence. Is the game winnable? Yes, of course, we just need to find that confidence we had under Pashley in the last two games before the disaster in Wales. Buoyed hopefully by a bigger crowd attracted by seeing our new manager in action, we can cheer on the lads to victory so I will go with a 2-1 Clarets win.
We are back at Turf Moor on Tuesday night (November 6th Kick-Off 7:45pm) for a high-profile game against Yorkshire rivals, Leeds United. The following Saturday we travel to Portman Rd for a game against current bottom club, Ipswich Town (November 10th Kick-Off 3pm)
Date:Thursday November 1 2012
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